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French prosecutor says Germanwings 4U9525 co-pilot deliberately crashed the plane

Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images
  1. Brice Robin, the French prosecutor investigating the crash of Germanwings Flight 4U9525, said at a press conference Thursday morning Eastern Time that he believes the co-pilot deliberately crashed the plane.
  2. Robin said the "most plausible" cause of the crash was that Andreas Lubitz, the German co-pilot, had "an intention to destroy this aircraft."
  3. The plane crashed in the French Alps on Tuesday, killing all 150 people onboard.
  4. A cockpit voice recorder reveals that at the time of the plane's descent, the pilot had left the cockpit and was unable to get back in.

The pilot couldn't re-enter the cockpit

Reports on Wednesday had suggested the pilot had been locked out of the cockpit.

"The guy outside is knocking lightly on the door, and there is no answer," a senior French military official told the New York Times, citing information from the plane's voice recorder. "And then he hits the door stronger, and no answer. There is never an answer." Later, according to the same investigator, "you can hear he is trying to smash the door down."

Later, in the Thursday press conference, Robin offered his interpretation of these events.

"The interpretation that for us, investigators," Robin said, "is the most plausible is that the co-pilot, through a deliberate omission, refused to open the door of the cockpit to the captain and activated the loss of altitude button for a reason that we are totally unaware of, but that can be interpreted as an intention to destroy this aircraft."

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